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03rd Jul 2018

James Milner puts teammates to shame in first fitness test of Liverpool’s preseason

Naby Keita and Adam Lallana were left in his wake

Darragh Murphy

James Milner has got some engine.

Milner doesn’t take many days off, it would seem, and he returned to Liverpool’s preseason training in phenomenal condition, as always.

The versatile Reds midfielder was the last man standing when the returning players were put through their paces in a lactate threshold test on Monday.

Adam Lallana was left battling it out with Milner as the final two competitors but only Milner answered the call to compete one final lap, ordering his teammates out of his way as he proved his superior cardio.

New arrivals Fabinho and Naby Keita will likely push Milner down the pecking order when it comes to a starting place next season but neither was able to keep up with the former England international on the first day of preseason training.

To be fair, Reds boss Jurgen Klopp had predicted early on that Milner would not be beaten in the fitness department.

He might be turning 33 years old in January, making him one of the elder statesmen in the Liverpool squad, but Milner continues to look after himself better than most players his age and it certainly shows.

He definitely serves a purpose and his tenacious approach to football suits Klopp’s Gegenpressing philosophy down to the ground, making Milner a shining example for his younger teammates to follow.